WASHINGTON — Most Rev. Francisco Gonzalez, SF, auxiliary bishop of Washington, D.C., presided at a Eucharistic liturgy on Saturday morning, during which he ordained four friars — Linh Hoang, OFM, Hugh Macsherry, OFM, Stephen Mimnaugh, OFM, and Harry Monaco, OFM — to the Order of the Diaconate.
The Sept. 6 ceremony took place at the crypt church at the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception on the campus of The Catholic University of America, where Pope Benedict XVI had addressed bishops last April. Next year will mark the 50th anniversary of the dedication of the basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception.
Bishop Gonzalez began the ceremony by commenting on the heavy rain outside the historic church. The Washington area experienced the edge of Hurricane Hannah that day.
“Who is responsible for this weather?” he said with a smile.
In his homily, the auxiliary bishop said, “God gave us good men.” He added: “You have been called. You have been preparing for this ministry for a while – through studies and prayer. As deacons, as ministers of Christ, you will serve the people of God.”
“Never get tired of proclaiming the Good News of Jesus Christ,” he said.
After thanking — in Spanish — the bishop for ordaining the friars, Francis Di Spigno, OFM, director of post-novitiate formation, said to the new deacons, “In the name of our Provincial Minister John O’Connor, OFM, and Provincial Vicar Dominic Monti, OFM, I congratulate you.
“We are aware that the formation process started long before these friars met us, and so we thank the families of these friars — their parents, siblings, cousins – and everyone who has supported them.”
Others participating in the Mass were Christopher Coccia, OFM, as deacon; Lawrence Anderson, OFM, as crucifer; Dwayne Fernandes, OFM, as thurifer; Mario Gomez, OFM, and David Phan, OFM, as acolytes.
Many friends and family members witnessed the ordination ceremony, including a group of hearing-impaired people that Hugh knows from his ministry at Gallaudet University in Washington, D.C.
After the Mass, a lunch reception was held at Holy Name College in nearby Silver Spring, Md., where the friars reside. The four new deacons were solemnly professed last month. They plan to be ordained to the priesthood next spring, after completing their studies.
Shown in photo above are, from left, Stephen Mimnaugh, Francis Di Spigno, Linh Hoang, Harry Monaco, Bishop Gonzalez, and Hugh MacSherry.
— Jocelyn Thomas is Director of Communications for Holy Name Province.